Sunday, August 28, 2011

Political Digest for August 28, 2011

Blog Down Again
Blogspot was again saying my blog had been removed on Saturday. Also failed to post the Saturday digest, changing it from "scheduled" to "draft" for no apparent reason. I was away and couldn't check until late Saturday night. It came back again, again, as with last week, no reason given. Hate to change to another provider when so many have this address. But when this happens, I assume I lose readers, who figure it's gone and don't come back. ~Bob.

Dennis Miller Interview
I’m scheduled to be interviewed about The Coming Collapse of the American Republic on Dennis Miller’s radio program at 11:34 am, EDT on Tuesday, August 30, 2011. You can listen live for free at DennisMillerradio.com.

Must Read: Mark Steyn: Depraved But Not Deprived
Excerpt: In fact, these feral youth live better than 90 percent of the population of the planet. They certainly live better than their fellow youths halfway around the world who go to work each day in factories across China and India to make the cool electronic toys young Westerners expect to enjoy as their birthright. In Britain, as in America and Europe, the young take it for granted that this agreeable division of responsibilities is as permanent a feature of life as the earth and sky: Rajiv and Suresh in Bangalore make the state-of-the-art gizmo, Kevin and Ron in Birmingham get to play with it. That's just the way it is. And, because that's the way it is, Kevin and Ron and the welfare state that attends their every need assume 'twill always be so.

‘Lock People Up? We Haven’t Got the Heart for That’
Excerpt: It’s a sad thing to watch a great nation — in its day, the greatest of all nations — descend into moral chaos. It’s sadder still to watch as that nation’s elites acquiesce to the descent. Witness the state of affairs in England, where four people were killed during the recent riots, which swept across London and through other cities like some kind of modern-day plague. I’ve spent but seven days in England, confining myself primarily to some of London’s quieter, safer areas, with one day spent with friends in their quaintest of English cottages in the quaintest of English towns. The trip was brief enough and so limited in scope that I was able to keep alive the England of my dreams, that most civilized of countries that once ruled the world, and even in the decline of its empire raised a fist to Hitler and endured the Blitz and Dunkirk before rearing up and chasing the Huns out of North Africa and across Europe. The England of my dreams is a country of ladies and gentlemen who hold their heads high and keep their upper lips stiff. Alas, the mother country isn’t what it used to be. If you keep your head held high and your upper lip stiff over there these days, some yob is likely to come along and smash you in the face with a brick. And then someone will write in the Guardian that it was your fault. I watched coverage of the English riots with no little sympathy for the police officers sent out to deal with them. In April 1992, I spent three nights chasing rioters hither and thither on the streets of South Los Angeles. That riot, like the recent violence in England, started as a protest to an incident of perceived police abuse. In Los Angeles, the spark was supplied by the videotaped police beating of Rodney King and the subsequent acquittal of the four LAPD officers brought to trial because of it. In England, it was a protest over the police shooting death of Mark Duggan.

UVA goes all in on Climate Gate FOIA cover up
Excerpt: The University of Virginia has joined a list of institutions claiming that there has been an actual inquiry into, and even 'exoneration' of, scientists exposed by the November 2009 "ClimateGate" leak, while simultaneously through its actions making a mockery of the idea. UVa's August 23 release under court order of 3,800 pages of emails—records that UVa previously denied existed—was its second since the American Tradition Institute (ATI) sought judicial assistance in bringing the school into compliance with the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (VFOIA). The school has spent approximately $500,000 to date keeping these records from the taxpayer, who paid for their production to begin with. The university again labored to avoid releasing correspondence directly addressing the now discredited “Hockey Stick” graph produced while former assistant research professor Michael Mann worked there. At least 126 of those emails were sent to or from Mann at UVa and were central to ClimateGate, which exposed a purported, now disavowed temperature record, as well as the Hockey Stick and related activities by scientists to keep dissenting work from publication. The emails showed scientists circling the wagons to protect their claims, funding and careers. Each of these 126 UVa ClimateGate emails, as with other related Mann correspondence with third parties of which we are aware, is covered by our VFOI request. Not one of them made it into UVa's releases. UVa acknowledges withholding between 3,500 and 4,000 more pages. This likely represents around ten times the original number of UVa emails revealed in “ClimateGate.” Even before ATI was able to review these emails, Mann described the release to Science Magazine, indicating a collaborative effort with the university in what amounts to hiding from the taxpayer efforts to derail exposure of the “Hockey Stick.” (For some months, we at TOJ have been following coverage of the Attorney General of Virginia’s attempt to get documents from UVa including emails to and from Dr. Michael Mann of Hockey Stick fame. We’ve also been watching the FOIA request from the American Tradition Institute which has finally gotten some traction (TOJ’s most recent coverage was Multi-tentacled Mann o’ war raging over UVA emails, on Aug 17th). It is worth mention that ALL of this work was paid for—at least in part—by Virginia taxpayers, and both by law and by contract, belongs to the taxpayers, not the University, its staff, or its professors (ask any copyright lawyer about “work for hire” if you have doubts about the ownership of this material). It may take another few years, and cost UVa—and therefore, the taxpayers—many times the current total already paid before this is settled. Emphasis added by me. Ron P.)

Watch Out for China’s Air Force
Excerpt: China watchers have been fixated on the maiden voyage of Beijing's first aircraft carrier this month. However, U.S. and Asian defense planners should take care not to ignore another aspect of China's growing military might. The Chinese Air Force may one day play the most significant role in challenging America's military presence in the Asia-Pacific. At the same time, looming cuts to the U.S. Air Force may wind up reducing its ability to protect American interests. As the U.S. Air Force's National Air and Space Intelligence Center put it in a report last year, the People's Liberation Army Air Force, or PLAAF, has been "transforming itself from a poorly equipped and trained organization into an increasingly capable fighting force. Dramatic changes have occurred, and continue to occur, in the areas of mission, organizational structure, personnel, education, training, and equipment." Today, the PLAAF remains years behind the U.S. Air Force in terms of experience, training and operational planning. But it is focusing precisely on those areas in an attempt to catch up. Analysts of China's Air Force warn against focusing solely on the planes it has, or "tail counting." An appreciation of its capabilities instead begins with what it can fly. The leading edge of its airpower is the advanced Russian Su-27/30 fighter, of which it has 150 planes, followed by more than 100 indigenously produced J-11s, based on the Su-27 model, and nearly 200 multirole J-10s, which have both air-combat and ground-attack capabilities.

Somalis All Over
Excerpt: To America’s shame, Mrs. Bokh and her kids have not been given a seven-bedroom house in an upscale neighborhood [as have the Khalifs in the UK], only a three-bedroom apartment in a middling neighborhood. Like the Khaliifs, though, the Bokhs will be fed, clothed, and educated courtesy of native taxpayers. “The Catholic Charities of West Tennessee…will help them get on their feet in Memphis,” says the news story, but that’s disingenuous since: (a) CCWT gets at least half its revenues from government grants (see Part VIII here); and (b) as soon as they can—a few months at most—CCWT hands off refugees to the general welfare system.

Author attacked for being fabulous
Excerpt: I’m using the word “fabulous” for a reason. In certain contexts it infers glamorous, frivolous, and a little campy. I think that may sum up author Paris Dipersico, 24, and his latest, self-published, book, Wake Up Call. Not everyone would agree, of course. Recently, Dipersico was attacked by two Muslim men who referred to him by another F-word: “faggot.” According to the Toronto Sun, Dipersico was ”dragged from his bicycle Aug. 17, tied up among trees, then beaten briefly unconscious” by them. No prizes for guessing that they were offended by Dipersico’s flamboyant book, in which he talks about drugs, sex, and, occasionally, Islam — in not an altogether flattering light. (Tough for him, but in the wonderful, wacky PC world, Muslim trumps Gay. ~Bob.)

Al Qaeda Number Two Killed In Pakistan This Week
Excerpt: The number two leader of al Qaeda, Atiyah abd al-Rahman, was killed on August 22 in Pakistan, a senior U.S. official told Reuters on Saturday. The official did not say how Rahman was killed, but said it happened in Waziristan, northwest Pakistan. The death, coming soon after the May killing of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, was a huge blow to the extremist organisation, the U.S. official said.

India's Parliament Gives In To Protests Over Corruption
India’s Parliament capitulated on Saturday to the anticorruption campaigner Anna Hazare and the hundreds of thousands of people who took to the streets to support his cause in a standoff that lasted nearly two weeks. After a day of wrangling and speechifying, Parliament adopted a resolution endorsing Mr. Hazare’s central demands for shaping legislation to create an independent anticorruption agency empowered to scrutinize public officials and bureaucrats in India. Mr. Hazare, 74, has been waging a hunger strike for 12 days, refusing to call it off unless Parliament adopted his proposed legislation to fight graft rather than a bill put forward by the government. Huge crowds of supporters have participated in peaceful protests and rallies across India in what became an outpouring of public disgust over corruption.

James Delingpole: Sun Causes Climate Change Shock
Excerpt: If Michael Crichton had lived to write a follow-up to State of Fear, the plotline might well have gone like this: at a top secret, state of the art laboratory in Switzerland, scientists finally discover the true cause of “global warming”. It’s the sun, stupid.

To the Shores of Tripoli
Excerpt: The toppling of Qaddafi’s 42-year dictatorship is a huge victory for the ongoing pan-Arab revolution known as the Arab Spring. The political map of the Middle East has been torn up after four decades of stultifying, soul-draining dictatorship (or, as one prominent American statesman once put it, “forty years of stability”). A region known for its interminable dynasties and would-be dynasties—Ben Ali in Tunisia, Mubarak in Egypt, Saddam in Iraq, the Assads in Syria, the Husseins in Jordan, the Saudi royal family—is witnessing the fall of one after another of those anachronistic icons. Of the remaining hold outs, perhaps some of those wise and nimble enough to respond to the surge of popular demands will survive. The kings may turn themselves into constitutional monarchs, transferring much of their power to elected parliaments. But those who resist the tide will ultimately fall, and probably by force of arms—as in Libya.

Why Jews Support the Democratic Party
Excerpt: The question I am asked more than any other – besides what happened to the once seemingly reasonable Bill Maher​ – is: Why do Jews support the Democrat Party? The answer is easy – but not short. Here goes: To be called a Jew –even to call yourself a Jew – is different than any other religion. To be called a Christian, you have to believe something. You have to believe that Jesus Christ​ is your Lord and Savior. If you believe that, you’re a Christian. If you don’t believe that, you’re not a Christian. If you do believe that, then there are certain rites and rituals, practices and behaviors that tend to follow. To be called a Muslim you have to believe something. You have to believe that the Koran is the final testament of God and Muhammad his perfect messenger. If you believe that, you’re a Muslim. If you don’t believe that then you’re not a Muslim. If you do believe this then there are certain rites and rituals, practices and behaviors that tend to follow. But, to be called a Jew you don’t have to believe anything. To be called a Jew, all you have to do is plop out of a Jewish womb. Because these Jews – I’ll call them here “The Plopping Jews” – do not believe anything particularly Jewish. Indeed, there’s absolutely no reason to expect them to vote in a way that reflects Jewish values and beliefs. Since a Jewish person’s Judaism is not of his own choosing or a reflection of his beliefs, his Jewishness is nothing more than an accident of his birth. Therefore, to expect him to choose to support Jewish causes is actually a form of bigotry. People’s behaviors are predicated on their beliefs, not on the circumstances of their birth. ... Evan Sayet is a satirist, lecturer and writer.

Obama Thuggery in Action: Gibson Competitor is Dem Donor; Uses Same Wood, Experience​d
Not verified, but nothing would surprise me. ~Bob. Excerpt: Via Andrew Lawton at Landmark Report: One of Gibson’s leading competitors is C.F. Martin & Company. The C.E.O., Chris Martin IV, is a long-time Democratic supporter, with $35,400 in contributions to Democratic candidates and the DNC over the past couple of elections (though, to be fair, he did donate a whopping $750 to Republican Congressmen in the 90s.) According to C.F. Martin’s catalog, several of their guitars contain “East Indian Rosewood.” In case you were wondering, that is the exact same wood in at least ten of Gibson’s guitars. If true, it add another piece to an increasingly disturbing puzzle.

California Senate Panel OK's Part of Dream Act
 Excerpt: In a major victory for immigrant advocates, a key state Senate committee cleared the most significant obstacle to a bill that would give college students who are illegal immigrants access to public aid for the first time. The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the final part of a two-bill package known as the California Dream Act, which would allow students who qualify for reduced in-state tuition to apply for an estimated $40 million in Cal Grants, community college fee waivers, and other public scholarship and grant programs. (I spent eight terms in one of these colleges and left last spring. These places are zoos. Disrupted classrooms, computer labs, libraries. God forbid you politely ask them to be quiet. That's racist. My professor for Spanish 1 and 3 told me I was always got the top grade on all our tests. They couldn't be bothered to learn their own language properly. Don't say anything about the way they don't flush the lavatories. I'm not saying there are not decent immigrants, but far too many of them are trouble-makers who go out of their way to create unpleasantness in public places. They intentionally provoke anger and then moan about oppression when they are called on that. Our lives here are a nightmare. If this legislation goes through, then the American kids from other states must also have the opportunity to come to California to study at the in-state California rates. We need those American kids here to balance out what's happening to our society in Los Angeles. In addition, acceptance at California colleges must be based upon academic achievement and personal character, not upon how sorry you feel for yourself. Kate in LA.)

Perry Bills Feds $349M for Incarcerating Illegals
Excerpt: Texas Gov. Rick Perry has asked the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for nearly $350 million to cover the costs he says Texas has incurred incarcerating illegal immigrants in state prisons and county jails. including the prison system. In a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Perry reiterated a claim he's often leveled against the federal government: that it's not doing enough to secure the border with Mexico and as a result, has allowed illegal immigrants to enter the U.S. and use taxpayer-funded resources...

Gaddafi 'seen in Zimbabwe on Mugabe's private jet' as Libya rebels march on dictator's home town
Rumors.... ~Bob. Excerpt: Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has fled Libya to Zimbabwe on a jet provided by Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe, it was claimed today, as rebels began the march on his home town. President Mugabe's political opponents claim their spies saw Gaddafi arrive in the country on a Zimbabwe Air Force jet in the early hours of Wednesday morning. They say the Libyan dictator was taken to a mansion in Harare's Gunninghill suburb, where agents from his all-female bodyguard were apparently seen patrolling the grounds.

Obama’s Team Is Blowing It
Excerpt: We were told, as I recall, that Barack Obama had to seek a debt deal with the Republicans to please independent voters. Well, the independent voters are speaking, and they don’t appear to be especially appeased. There’s a new Gallup poll just out showing that independent voters hate the deal. Their views on it are far more similar to the GOP’s than to the Democratic Party’s. Combine these data with the president’s approval numbers, which are swiftly heading south, and we have little choice but to conclude that this brilliant stratagem backfired. Isn’t it time for someone to say: this new White House political team is worse than the previous one? (...) The fundamental problem appears to be the excessive fixation on Obama’s (forgive me for even using this word) “brand”—this “adult in the room” nonsense. Whenever I see those words in print anymore, usually in a background quote from a White House aide or a Democratic source trying gamely to be on-message, I hear strong and unsettling echoes of the 2008-vintage messianism. Does anyone buy this anymore, outside of what appears to be an increasingly bubble-ized White House? Those beloved independents certainly aren’t thinking of the president that way these days, and one doubts that even most of his supporters are. Obama’s brand is and has by now long been determined by events and facts, not by White House spin and set pieces, or by vestigial remnants of the Days of Hope. Those events and facts are almost uniformly grim.... (Liberal Daily Beast sometimes seems to have a split personality: they either LOVE Obama or HATE him as much as they hate Republicans. And, isn’t it amazing how those skinflints in the lower house can ruin so many plans just by withholding their consent from spending bills? Once again, with feeling: Americans are governed by their consent, not in spite of its lack. It’s the liberal dream, not the team, that’s wrong. Ron P.)

Texas Supreme Court Upholds $5 Strip Club Fee
Excerpt: A $5 entrance fee to Texas strip clubs is constitutional and not an improper restriction on nude dancing, the Texas Supreme Court ruled Friday. Lower courts had called the so-called "pole tax" an improper burden on the free expression of nude dancing and a violation of the First Amendment. The fee has been imposed on clubs that allow nude dancing and serve alcohol since 2007 to raise money for sexual assault prevention programs and health care for the uninsured. But the all-Republican Supreme Court, which ruled unanimously, said the fee is too small to be considered a burden on free expression, and the state has a legitimate interest in trying to curb the secondary effects of potential violence associated with adult entertainment and alcohol. To avoid paying the fee, strip clubs could simply not serve alcohol, Justice Nathan Hecht wrote for the court. (Imagine! Those rotten sinners going to stare at nekkid wimmin! And drinking demon rum while they do it, too! Make’em pay! All this really means is the entry cover charge is higher. And, clearly, not all blue-noses are Democrats. Ron P. I never liked strip clubs much, because I always felt the women were exploiting me. Sure, they may have been interested in my charm and good looks, but I always thought they were just after my money. ~Bob.)

Excerpt: Mehek Masih was taken from her home in broad daylight and under the threat of a gun. Muslim man intends to "purify her" making her "Muslim and my mistress." Archbishop Saldanha cases of this type are "frequent," the law does not protect minorities. One of the many "crosses" that Pakistani Christians have to endure.

Algeria suicide bomb attack hits military academy
More Muslim victims of Allahmurder. ~Bob. Excerpt: A suicide bomb attack on a military academy in Algeria has killed 18 people, officials say. The attack took place in the town of Cherchell, about 100km (60 miles) west of the capital Algiers. One or two bombers set off their explosives just after the breaking of the Ramadan fast, reports said. No group has said it carried out the attack. It comes 12 days after a suicide car bombing of a police station in Tizi Ouzu wounded 29 people. That attack was claimed by the Islamist group Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), which is active in the region.

Somali Islamists behead 11 civilians in capital

Didn't get the "Islam is a religion of peace" memo. ~Bob. Excerpt: Somali Islamist rebels have beheaded at least 11 civilians in the capital in the past two weeks, a campaign of terror that residents said Friday is designed to show the insurgency can still act in Mogadishu after withdrawing from their bases there earlier this month. "We wake up with beheaded bodies on the streets every day," said Abdinur Marwan, who lives in a district of Mogadishu called Hewila. "They call themselves Muslims while doing what Allah banned! Everyone is trying to leave here because people are being killed like goats."

It begins: "Largely secular" Muslim Brotherhood sets its sights on "beach tourism" as Salafists say antiquities are of a "rotten culture"
Excerpt: The things that we were assured won't, can't, or ought not to happen after the Egyptian revolution are happening. Egypt's economy will suffer, leading to widespread discontent and potential political unrest. Good thing there's always Israel to blame. "Egypt’s Brotherhood declares war on the bikini," from All Headline News, August 25: Sunbathing in Alexandria may soon be a thing of the past, at least if some Egyptian Islamist politicians have their way. Egypt's tourism industry has suffered a severe blow since the outburst of anti-regime demonstrations in January. But that did not stop the Freedom and Justice Party, the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood, from demanding stricter regulations over what tourists can do and wear while visiting the country. The party is urging officials to ban skimpy swimwear and the consumption of alcohol on Egyptian streets. Freedom and Justice: you are free to obey Sharia, which will be given a monopoly on the definition of "justice."

Abuja attack: Car bomb hits Nigeria UN building
Excerpt: At least 18 people have been killed in an apparent suicide car bombing at the United Nations headquarters in the Nigerian capital, Abuja. The powerful blast destroyed the lower floors of the building. Dozens have been injured, some critically. A spokesman for the Islamist group Boko Haram told the BBC in a phone call that it had carried out the attack.

Norway: Christian convert tortured with boiling water: "Return to Islam or we kill you"
Why would he want to leave such peaceful religion? ~Bob. Excerpt: At Hå asylmum centre, "Ali" had boiling water poured over him after converting to Christianity and not fasting during Ramadan. Now he and other converts fear for their lives.

Woman Tries to Shoot Cop With Unloaded Gun, But Gets Shot in Butt by Officer
Excerpt: Shandra Kidd was shot in the buttocks after she tried to shoot a police officer with an unloaded gun (via the Chicago Sun-Times) A Chicago woman who tried to shoot a police officer without realizing the bullets had fallen out of her gun was sentenced to 55 years in prison Thursday. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Shandra Kidd was running from officers during the 2007 incident, and when an officer caught up with her, she stuck a gun in the officer’s chest and pulled the trigger — but the gun didn’t go off. They continued to wrestle, and Kidd fired again at the officer’s chest, but the gun still did not go off. At that point, the officer shot Kidd — in the buttocks. Police later discovered the bullets had fallen out of Kidd’s gun when the cylinder opened during the chase.

Black Hole Eats Star
Excerpt: Back in March, when NASA's Swift spacecraft first detected what scientists believed to be a black hole eating a star 3.8 billion light years from earth, many didn't quite know what it would mean. But now it seems the cosmic event not only sent a beam of X-rays shooting towards earth, but it also rejuvenated the black hole. (...) The black hole itself is enormous, potentially four times the size of the one at the center of the Milky Way, according to NASA. Even more incredibly, the massive hole seems to be shooting matter out of its center at 80 to 90 percent of the speed of light.

UFO Sightings Increase 67 Percent In 3 Years, History Channel Investigates
Excerpt: The Mutual UFO Network -- the largest privately funded UFO research organization in the world -- tells The Huffington Post that more people than ever are reporting unidentified flying objects, mostly in the United States and Canada. "Over the past year, we've been averaging 500 sighting reports a month, compared to about 300 three years ago [67 percent]," MUFON international director Clifford Clift said. "And I get one or two production companies contacting me every week, wanting to do stories on UFOs." So far this week, mysterious aerial lights in Laredo, Texas, and Kansas City, MO., lived up to, at least initially, the strict definition of UFOs, namely "Unidentified" Flying Objects. That, of course, doesn't mean that little green men are watching us. It's generally accepted that 95 percent of all sightings are easily dismissed. Some turn out to be conventional aircraft, others are satellites or weather balloons -- and then there are the hoaxers with Photoshopped concoctions. (...) However, the remaining 5 percent of all UFO reports aren't as easily explained. And many of them are reported by commercial and military pilots. (Perhaps unemployed people have more time to look at the sky. I have no doubt that people see things they can’t identify. I also have no doubt some of the official “explanations” are so far-fetched as to be absurd. The evidence, such as it is, is resolutely inconclusive. But. Where are the pieces of the UFO wrecked by the drunken 17-year-old’s equivalent? Where are the unexplained bones/shell/carapace of the ones buried/fossilized? Their equipment never fails, you say? BS, I respond. If there are aliens, there has to be an equivalent of AAA road service. Unidentified means unidentified, as unsatisfactory as that feels. Ron P. Given the results of contacts in human history between a more technologically advanced society and a less advanced one, I am not hoping to meet star travelers. ~Bob.)

Wolf: DOJ Needs to Release Terror Finance Information
Excerpt: In the wake of yesterday's IPT News report on the Justice Department's handling of an investigation into a financial network with links to the Muslim Brotherhood, a prominent House lawmaker wants answers from the Obama Administration. Rep. Frank Wolf, (R-VA), chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee overseeing the Justice Department, told the Investigative Project on Terrorism that DOJ is making a mistake by refusing to make public the details of the settlement it reached with the Islamic Investment Company of the Gulf (IICG). The Virginia lawmaker said that on Monday he will send administration officials a letter urging that all of the information about the case be made public. Wolf said that if the administration balks, he is prepared to insert language into the Justice Department appropriations conference report to force the release of all information about the settlement. "But I'm hoping it won't get to that point," he said.

Mexican Police Are Now Staging Drug Raids From Inside The U.S.
Excerpt: The New York Times reports that the Obama administration is now allowing Mexican police to orchestrate cross-border drug raids from inside the United States.
Under the new program, Mexican agents travel secretly to the U.S. where, with intel and support from the DEA, they launch so-called "boomerang missions" against suspected drug traffickers back across the border. The operations are yet another indication of the deteriorating security situation in Mexico. By staging operations from the U.S., both governments hope to avoid the cartel corruption that continues to plague the Mexican military. The campaign also skirts around the strict limitations Mexico puts on U.S. agents operating in the country. The missions are part of the Obama administration's growing campaign to crack down on Mexico's violent drug cartels. The Times reported earlier this month that the CIA and the DEA have set up a least one intelligence base inside Mexico, and the U.S. military has been deploying Predator drones over drug production facilities and trafficking routes across the border.

Excerpt: If a quarter of all babies born in England and Wales are to foreign mothers, then we’re experiencing the biggest change in our demographic identity since the Anglo-Saxon invasions of the fifth century. Future historians will regard this as the major development in early 21st-century British history, more important even than the loss of our sovereignty to the EU, which I’m beginning to think may be reversed one day, thanks to the slapstick collapse of the euro. Demographic change, in contrast, can’t be undone by happy accidents.

Time for the White House to rein in Michelle Obama's out-of-control spending
Excerpt: With the United States facing a national debt of more than $14 trillion, the largest since World War Two, wouldn’t it make sense for the White House itself to start trimming its own spending? A good place to begin cutting would be Michelle Obama’s rather generous vacation programme. Keith Coffler, who edits the influential White House Dossier, notes that Michelle Obama spent no less than 42 days on vacation over the past year – that’s one in every nine days: Her vacations, the cost of which are mostly borne by taxpayers, include trips to Panama City, Fla., Martha’s Vineyard, Hawaii, South Africa, Latin America, Vail, Colo., and her visit this week to her brother in Corvallis, Ore.

You Want Proof Obama's a Failure? Here It Is
Excerpt: “Tell me again why Barack Obama has been such a bad president?” Jonathan Alter writes in his column. Alter tells us he’s not talking here about Obama as a tactician and communicator, and he’s not interested in hearing ad hominem attacks or about people’s generalized “disappointment.” (Neither am I.) He wants to know on a substantive basis why Obama should be judged to have failed so far. In Alter’s words, “Your mission, Jim [or anyone else for that matter], should you decide to accept it, is to be specific and rational, not vague and visceral.” Consider the mission accepted. In one sense, the answer to the Alter challenge is obvious: Obama has failed by his own standards. It’s the Obama administration, not the RNC, that said if his stimulus package was passed unemployment would not exceed 8 percent. It’s Obama who joked there weren’t as many “shovel-ready” jobs as he thought. It’s Obama who promised to cut the deficit in half. It’s Obama who said if we passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the health care cost curve would go down rather than up. It’s Obama who promised us recovery and prosperity, hope and change. What we’ve gotten instead is the opposite.

Sex With Cave Men Gave Humans An Immune Boost
Excerpt: Scientists already knew that about four percent of Neanderthal DNA and up to six percent of Denisovan DNA are present in some modern humans. (This is what I've been trying to tell you ever since I got to LA. - Kate)

Libyan Embassy Staff Member Who Shot Dead 25 Year-Old Woman Police Officer Yvonne Fletcher in 1984 Has Been Identified
Excerpt: Following the collapse of Muammar Gaddafi’s regime, Scotland Yard, which has kept the case open, is planning to send officers to Libya in the hope of bringing the suspected killer and his alleged accomplices to justice. (At the time, the British allowed everyone in the Libyan Embassy to leave the country. - Kate in LA)

King Arthur's Round Table May Have Been Found By Archaeologists In Scotland
Excerpt: The King's Knot, a geometrical earthwork in the former royal gardens below Stirling Castle, has been shrouded in mystery for hundreds of years. Though the Knot as it appears today dates from the 1620s, its flat-topped central mound is thought to be much older. Writers going back more than six centuries have linked the landmark to the legend of King Arthur. Archaeologists from Glasgow University, working with the Stirling Local History Society and Stirling Field and Archaeological Society, conducted the first ever non-invasive survey of the site in May and June in a bid to uncover some of its secrets. (In Britain, August is called "the silly season". Normally we get sightings of Nessie round about this time of year. It's called 'tourism'. --Kate)

Mexico casino arson attack kills dozens in Monterrey
Excerpt: An arson attack on a casino in the northern Mexican city of Monterrey has killed more than 50 people. Several gunmen burst into the building in broad daylight, dousing it with fuel and setting it alight. Amid the panic, many people were trapped and overcome by smoke. Officials suspect organised crime was behind the attack, one of the deadliest since President Felipe Calderon launched his crackdown on the cartels in December 2006.

Risk perception – of fans and fission reactors
Excerpt: Terror stalks the nation. Death; mysterious, invisible, and ineluctable to any who ignore the warning to flee from this killer haunts the suburbs and the villages, the apartment blocks and farmhouses, cowing folk high or humble, man, woman and child. All are fearful but the very young, so parents drill the message into children as soon as they are able to understand. No loving parent wants their child’s life cut short by misuse of this perilous technology. It was introduced recently, in historical terms. It was just one of a number of new technologies to arrive after the war when the great modernisation of all aspects of life began under the guidance of the government. No-one knew at first what a cuckoo had been put in the nest, what a deadly threat had been unknowingly foisted onto the people in this heedless rush into the future, but it emerged soon enough, and the terror began. Now the nation is fully aware of the danger. The trouble is the technology is just so darned useful that people won’t give it up, even though it holds such risk. Lets face it. Summers are hot, and who wants be without their electric fan? Not everyone has air-conditioning, and electric fans are cheap when you need to cool down. I am referring, of course, to the well-known phenomenon of fan death. According to some, death will often ensue when an electric fan has been left running in a sealed room in which people are sleeping. This peculiar belief is widespread in the nation of South Korea, and nowhere else. The South Korean media occasionally runs stories about people who have been found dead in their bedrooms or apartments when an electric fan has been left running during hot weather. In any other nation in the world, those deaths would likely be listed as resulting from heat exhaustion, or indirectly from heat stress on an elderly person. In South Korea, however, no-one is in any doubt that insidious fan death has struck again. In fact belief in fan death is so strong that the government has responded to community concerns by mandating that all electric fans sold in South Korea must come with a timer switch to cut the power after a few minutes should you be so reckless as to wish to go to sleep with the fan on, and people are encouraged to use it for their own good. (This brilliant example of folk-science trumping the demonstrated results of millions of everyday experiences is emblematic of the demonization of nuclear energy, oil, and atmospheric carbon dioxide. By the way, not only is this phenomenon real, you can Google it or look it up in Wikipedia. Ron P.)

Every Single One: The Politicized Hiring of Eric Holder’s Compliance Section
Excerpt: Today’s installment focuses on the new career attorneys hired into the Division’s Federal Coordination and Compliance Section, which until recently was known as the Coordination and Review Section, or “COR” in DOJ nomenclature. COR badgers state and municipal governments who receive federal funds — federal gripes follow federal gold. They also serve as the watchdog over the behavior of other federal agencies. The stated mission of COR is to “ensure that all federal agencies consistently and effectively enforce civil rights statutes and Executive Orders that prohibit discrimination in federally conducted and assisted programs and activities.” Most of the Section’s resources are spent bullying educational institutions into complying with expansionist interpretations of Title IX, or coercing law enforcement agencies into providing expensive foreign language translation services. The Section during this administration has also managed to find time to demand that municipalities permit Muslim women to wear headscarves in court. For reasons of political expediency, jurisdictions rarely challenge the legality of the Executive Orders enforced by the Section. If they did, however, the Section’s work would decline precipitously. Five new career attorneys have been hired into the Section since Holder took office. As is true of the new attorneys hired into every other section, there is not a single apolitical individual — let alone a conservative — in the bunch. (This is the seventh article in the series—I find it incredible that there are enough topics for that many articles just within just the DOJ, and there’s no sign of the articles stopping soon—and the header has links to the previous entries. Just ask yourself what the MSM would be doing if this had been the case during the Bush—or any Republican—administration. Do you think they’d completely ignore it as they are currently? I think they’d be calling for torches and pitchforks. But, then, I question the MSM’s fairness. I must be a Neanderthal. Ron P.)

Drug war sparks exodus of affluent Mexicans
Excerpt: For years, national security experts have warned that Mexico’s drug violence could send a wave of refugees fleeing to the United States. Now, the refugees are arriving — and they are driving BMWs and snapping up half-million-dollar homes. Tens of thousands of well-off Mexicans have moved north of the border in a quiet exodus over the past few years, according to local officials, border experts and demographers. Unlike the much larger population of illegal immigrants, they are being warmly welcomed. “It goes counter to the conventional wisdom about the Mexican presence in the United States,” San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro said. The influx “is positive, it is entrepreneurial . . . and one of the keys to a very successful growing city like San Antonio.”

Excerpt: Leave it to the feds to foul the waters by the Central Park Boathouse. The union-happy heavies at the National Labor Relations Board are preparing to file a complaint against the Boathouse restaurant, where some employees, in an effort to unionize, went on strike this month. That’s their right, of course. But it’s quite extraordinary of the NLRB to seek a court order forcing the restaurant to enter contract negotiations with the Hotel Trades Council: After all, Boathouse employees don’t belong to the union. It’s just the latest bizarre anti-business rocket from the NLRB:

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